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Fishing

  • Zack Byrd: Young phenom on the verge of success

    I first met Zack Byrd in 2003 when he won the Carolinas Junior Championship. I sat in his home in Calabash and chatted with the young phenom, and his parents, Cindy and Steve. He was being home-schooled at the time because his junior golf schedule was so rigorous it would not allow him to attend a regular high school with any consistency. Each week, his dad or mom drove him to junior events all over the country. 

  • How’s the fishing? Something’s always biting

    Having been a professional fisherman for nearly 20 years, there is simply no replacement for experience in learning and understanding an area’s fishery. And to this day, I am still humbled at how foolish the fish can make me feel. However, I do feel as if time has afforded me the opportunity to experience year after year seasonal fish behavior and, as such, sort of get an idea about what the fish are doing. 

  • Night fishing is the way to beat the heat

     Brunswick County fishing has picked up a bit from the summer doldrums we have been in. Oppressive heat continues to make fishing best early in the morning or after sunset, but at least anglers have been catching some fish as they begin to turn their eyes toward fall.

    The piers have seen scattered catches of Spanish mackerel, bluefish, black drum and flounder with speckled trout showing up for some morning runs. There are some pompano in the surf along with the snapper blues and a few puppy red drum.

  • Flounder tourney set for July 31

     Members of the Cape Fear Flounder Tournament Committee have organized the Southport-Oak Island Area Chamber of Commerce’s first flounder tournament, which will be July 31 at Southport Marina. 

    Don Hughes is the chairman of the tourney, which has an all-cash guarantee of prizes. This is a boat-only tournament. All fish must be taken on a rod and reel. Entry fee is $100 per boat, with optional $50 tournament within a tournament fee.

  • Pompano provide great day fishing, terrific evening meals

     Local anglers are in the middle of a hot summer, and fishing is best in the early mornings or around sunset. 

    One species that can be caught during the day, however, are pompano. This year the pompano were late showing up in our waters but they are present now and will get more numerous as we pass August and go toward the fall.

  • Offshore fishing gets back to normal

     “Normal” is a loose word in reference to fishing. I’ve been fishing for many years, and I still struggle when someone asks me what he can expect to catch on any given day. 

    The problem is fish have minds of their own and tails that can lead them most anywhere. I’ve read science that says fish have a brain the size of a pea. I’ve been out there hunting fish on many days when I felt as if I had the brain the size of pea and they were nothing short of genius. 

  • A fish to target in summer is sheepshead

     Brunswick County inshore anglers are in the stranglehold of a familiar summer pattern right now: early morning bites, nothing happening during the hot days and powerful thunderstorms roaming at night. I wouldn’t say fishing is bad, but not much is happening while the sun is high in the sky.

  • Summer trade winds make tough offshore fishing conditions

     Mother Nature is balancing the weather equation once again. We had several incredible weeks of weather in mid-June and now we are paying for it in mid-July. 

    As is typical for the summer, a high-pressure ridge has set up to our west, known as a Bermuda high. This high-pressure system brings us a southerly flow, which drives up the heat and humidity and brings the southwest trade winds. These winds are what bother us fishermen the most, as the more the wind, the bigger the seas. 

  • Fishing variety continues despite heat

     Fishing has continued good throughout the area for a variety of species, despite water temperatures climbing well into the 80s.  

    In the backwater, the flounder, redfish and speckled trout have been biting. It is typical for the flounder and redfish to be good, but the surprising resurgence of speckled trout has many inshore guys scratching their heads. 

  • Tips to catch those lazy fish during summer doldrums

     Inshore fishing remains in the stranglehold of what fishermen refer to as the summer doldrums. There are fish present and feeding but everything becomes sluggish during the heat of the day, which can fool some folks into thinking there are no fish around. Instead of giving in, try these tips for summer fishing.